Can anyone recommend a good, truly warm winter riding boot/calf boot? (vs. paddock boot). For flat ringwork and trail/field work? I live near the Dover store and also Saddlery Liquidators in northern VA. I don't like to be cold and it's getting quite chilly here to ride. Thanks
I am with you I like my feet warm. First most important to me is to use Smart Wool socks. They keep your feet from sweating while you are walking around and getting ready. Wool is great but you sweat. The other thing I do is use hiking boots. Not riding boots they are better insolated and my feet stay warm longer.That is what works for me.
Stay warm Happy trails.
I suggest you not get the Ariat Glacier riding boots (the paddock anyways). Instead of keeping my feet warm, dry, and toasty. My feet get wet and it insulates the cold. I don't know if I need to spray some waterproofer on it or what, they are supposed to be goretex, sp? But it seems like the snow absorbs into them and leaks through to my feet, and the boots hold in the cold. I was dissapointed in the overall quality of them too. The shoelaces fell apart, and now the liners ripping (I got them last year)
I also agree with what questisthebest said. I got a pair for Christmas last year. Mine don't leak but my feet get cold in these, even with wool socks. I have other Ariat shoes and love them, but don't know where Ariat went wrong with these.
Fit and comfort are paramount in the business of keeping warm. On this note, I prefer wool socks, not too thick ( contrary to what others say I find synthetic fibers, such as polar fleece, make me sweat, and thick socks make for tight boots, close fit = cold feet.
My personal favorite winter riding boot is the Tall Brit Rider boot by Muck boot company. These are waterproof and very, very insulating, also great for shoveling large amounts of snow in sub zero weather, if needed. My best present last Christmas!
not sure what they call them these days. i've had mine for 4 or 5 years. love them!
comfy, lots of room for a sock and to wiggle toes (so important in cold weather). also for a heat pack if you need one. you stay nice and warm in them for a long time. but make sure you let the inside of the boot dry in between rides. any moisture trapped in there will make your feet get cold faster. they also have the stretchy stuff next to the zipper so you can put them over long johns and breeches.
I do remarkably well in my plain ol' Muck Boots! Doesn't hurt that there's plenty of room for whatever layers I wear under them, although most of the time I don't have a lot of layers. Do keep in mind, though, if you ride in them, make sure your stirrups are wide enough to accomodate them -- safety issue otherwise! Or dispense with stirrups and just go bareback; that's what winter's for!
They stink as far as traction goes - but a set of YakTrax solves that problem very nicely, and they're easy to get on & off too.
Plain old pantyhose do remarkably well for helping to keep tootsies warm.
Also, buy an el cheapo aerosol can of anti-perspirant and spray it on your feet before putting socks on. Very helpful.
Get a pair of boots that are 1 size too large & wide for your foot normally. that way you can layer with lots of socks. I've used silk sock liners and polypropylene sock liners. Both work in combo with a nice thick pair of wool (the higher the wool content the better)blend socks. Get all mine in the hunting section at Walmart!! If toes are cramped for space; it cuts off circulation and you need that to keep 'em warm. You should be able to wiggle them WITH your layers. You may have to abandon knee high riding boots for the winter and go with warmer shoes/chaps.
Also, I thing full leg chaps are quite warming with paddock boots for trailriding this time of year. And don't forget your long underwear under your pants!!
I havent ridden in them yet but i got one size bigger than i normally wear to add layers, the calves seem a bit large but will help when im wearing more than one layer of pants. I cant wait to try them out tomorrow.
I live in Alberta where it can get -30 (celsius) with the windchill. For an early christmas present my mother bought my the Ariat Arctic tall boots. They are perfect for cold weather riding.I also use two extra socks on, but I still have room to move my feet
I finally got to use my Mountain Horse Rimfrost winter riding boots. Two thumbs up! I understand not to wear so many layers that there is no room for the heat to build up...I meant about layers on the pants not my socks. The calves on these boots are very large and I have tiny pencil legs. SO i was thinking of if need be to put on riding pants and then a layer over them to take up some of the calf bulk, not the foot bulk.
Anyway these boots kept my feet/legs nice and warm although the weather wasnt extremely cold the few times I used them but they were nice and toasty. Although I am sure they just need to be broken in but I have really bad ankles from being broken, beaten up, sprained, etc and the boot held my feet/ankles in an uncomfortale position to where I had to drop my sturrips for most of my ride (only about 15 mins into it). The next time I rode in them I wrapped both of my ankles which seemed to help a bit more (got a longer ride30-45) but still pain. I do believe they just need to be broken in and become flexible for my ankle and they would be perfect! Guess I'm gonna be bending the boots and using some saddle soap or rubbing alch on the inside of the boots to get them soft.
I generally dont ride in tall boots so Im just not used to the shaping and hold that they provide. I usually ride in an ankle high boot that is flexible.
But all in all LOVE the boots just need to be broken in!
it's not the edge of the earth, but you can see it from here
It was -17 standing air here the other night... that's not un-common...
I have Muck Boot Brit Riders, Dafnas, and now the Mtn Horse older version tall boot.
The Brit riders are great if they are very dry to start with and until your feet sweat. Once feet sweat... screwed. (and then they are damp and very hard to dry) but for slushy or wet conditions, you can't beat them with smartwool socks. Eventually though, they will get damp, because they are, afterall, waterproof rubber boots.
The Dafnas are by far the warmest, but not the most waterproof, and are very clunky. They are also too soft/floppy for really great riding position. Plusses are removeable felt liner like snomobile boots, which means very warm and also you *can* get them dry... and the foot is rubber. (bean shoe foot, canvassy upper) I just find that even though they are the right size for me, I trip in them a lot, and they're clunky for some reason. Perhaps because there *is* so much boot, and they're soft. If they were stiffer in the shaft? I dunno. But toasty warm.
JUst got the Mtn Horses and I LOVE them for dry snow/cold. Mine are the older version. Great leg support for riding. Toasty warm inside. Feet don't seem to get as damp as in the Brit Riders. They aren't all that comfy for doing chores in--precisely *because* they are stiffer... the ankle area rubs a little... but for riding, they can't be beat. I come in and change into my LL Bean winter boots or the Brit Riders for chores as soon as I'm done riding. Which is FINE because I need them to last several years.
I've never tried Ariats because the calf is not big enough. The above three all accomodate a generous calf. I don't even need a wide calf in the Mtn Horse, and I do in most other boots.
Finally, if I am teaching or auditing or any such thing, I add the instant heat pack thingies. They come shaped for the toe of the boot or the whole foot. I had a frost bite a couple years ago, and also have symptoms that mimic Reynauds from the Rx I take for diabetes... the heat packs have completely saved me. I hate to use them every day, as it seems like a huge waste of $$--but they do 'deactivate' when you put them in a ziplock sandwich bag and get rid of the air. For any sort of prolonged exposure, I think they are a must.
<<I live in Alberta where it can get -30 (celsius) with the windchill. For an early christmas present my mother bought my the Ariat Arctic tall boots. They are perfect for cold weather riding.I also use two extra socks on, but I still have room to move my feet>>
I *just* got my order from Dover Saddlery of the Ariat Arctic tall boots. Can't wait to try them this week, and see how they feel when mounted.
<<I've never tried Ariats because the calf is not big enough. The above three all accomodate a generous calf. I don't even need a wide calf in the Mtn Horse, and I do in most other boots.>>
The Ariats do seem a little narrow in the calf. Actually, I wish the Ariat Arctic had a back zipper so that the fit could be a little more shapely. The ankle area is a little too loose, I guess to accomodate for being able to slide your foot/heel in all the way, and for you to be able to have your heels down in the stirrup.
They do seem extremely well-insulated, so I'll report back what I find after I've given them a good ride!
As I mentioned before, I recently got the Ariat Arctic tall boots. Pros and cons:
1. Definitely waterproof
2. Extremely warm, without overheating
3. The inner calves are a suede or clarino-type material so no sliding or scratching on the saddle flaps
4. Pretty easy to clean -- you know how that barn material + mud sticks to your shoes
1. Pull-on rather than zipper style
2. While the construction is durable (I think there are steel shanks?) they do feel a little bit clunky. Walking around, I feel like I'm stomping a lot On the horse, it's not as easy to slide in/out of stirrups. Though once they are in, they feel pretty secure.
1. The foot area was at first a little roomy; I had on thin socks the first time and when walking, my feet definitely did slide around inside. But with mid-weight socks, the fit has been good with just enough wiggle room. I would have space for those toe warmers if necessary.
2. While the upper calf has velcro tabs, they may not exactly fit all calf sizes.
Overall: Not perfect but a worthwhile investment, my toes never freeze/get stiff anymore!
How about maintaining flexibility in the ankles? I was wearing my snow boots and ended up hopping up for a few, but found the lack of flexibility was really uncomfortable for me. I haven't ever worn tall boots, I am used to paddock/hiking types, so I am wary not to buy something that I can't move in.